ANTIMATTER’s Fear of a Unique Identity Now Streaming in its Entirety

To promote the release of ANTIMATTER‘s new record, Fear of a Unique Identity, the band’s label, Prophecy Productions, has posted the record online for streaming.

It can be obtained in four different physical editions from common record retailers and Prophecy Productions‘s online shop:

– Jewelcase CD with 8-page booklet and no extras (9.99 Euro incl. worldwide shipping)
– Digipak CD with extended 16-page booklet and two bonus tracks (14.99 Euro incl. worldwide shipping)
– Ltd. Artbook 2CD/DVD (28x28cm hardcover book, 48 pages) with 6-track bonus CD and DVD with “Uniformed & Black” music video; ltd. 1.000 (38.99 Euro incl. worldwide shipping)
– Ltd. gatefold LP (heavy 180g vinyl) with poster and PVC protection sleeve; ltd. 500 (19.99 Euro incl. worldwide shipping)

Fear of a Unique Identity @ Prophecy’s online shop

Check out the music video for “Uniformed & Black“:

Duncan Patterson’s ALTERNATIVE 4 Signs with Prophecy Productions

Duncan Patterson‘s latest project, ALTERNATIVE 4 has announced its signing with Prophecy Productions. With the band name derived from the ANATHEMA album from 1998, the musical and atmospheric direction of this band is given: a solid rock foundation enriched with painful piano and string arrangements, sometimes on the verge of ambient music, sometimes offering the big influence of the rather dark and abysmal side of PINK FLOYD. All this can already be witnessed on last year’s debut album The Brink.

Duncan Patterson is an icon of melancholic alternative rock music. With his crucial songwriting role on ANATHEMA‘s Eternity and Alternative 4 he freed the Liverpool doomsters of their tight metal corset, he founded the likewise renowned ANTIMATTER whose first albums he shaped significantly, and he explored ethereal melancholia on two ION albums thus far.

Duncan Patterson on the new cooperation: “It’s good to be back onboard a label who have always had respect for my work, regardless of how obscure or ‘uncommercial’ it often turns out. In todays musical climate it is difficult to find a decent label who are genuinely focused more on the artistic/innovative side than anything else. For me that is essential as I’ve no plans to start playing and writing fashionable music as a career move, not unless I do it accidentally that is.”

The upcoming album will be entitled The Obscurants and will probably be recorded in late 2012.

ANATHEMA – We’re Here Because We’re Here

It feels like it’s been a lifetime since the release of a new ANATHEMA album and the waiting has been taxing on fans. No doubt there have been various legitimate reasons for the length of time, including turmoil within the band and business issues. Now, onto the positive side of things…We’re Here Because We’re Here is absolutely fantastic.

The aura of positivity and hope is embodied in everything about the record, even on the more sublime songs. Just look at the cover artwork. Despite the fact that ANATHEMA has made a career of depressing and melancholic music, We’re Here Because We’re Here somehow fits perfectly into their catalogue. Even a song titled “Angels Walk Among Us” works. In the same manner in which their melancholic songs lifted one’s spirit, these songs do the same.

Stylistically, this is the further evolution of their unique style of atmospheric, emotional prog. The music is lush and rich without sounding overpowering or overdone. The song arrangements are dynamic and nearly flawless. Every member of the band can clearly be heard and lend their collective voices to create the synergy that can be heard. Subtle traces of their doom metal roots can be heard here and there.

No disrespect to ANATHEMA‘s previous two albums, A Natural Disaster and A Fine Day to Exit, but We’re Here Because We’re Here is the band’s strongest effort since Judgment. The latter is just so complete, full, and solid.

The bottom line is one of the best bands in the scene is back and the world is a better place for it. Welcome back, ANATHEMA. We missed you. (The End Records)

Anathema – Everything by TomosBlack

ANTIMATTER – Alternative Matter

Music is such a powerful form of expression, one that can blow your mind and speak to the soul. ANTIMATTER is one such band that operates at the deepest levels. It’s a given that the band’s releases have all been winners and this anniversary compilation is no different. Band mastermind Mick Moss combed through the archives to include demos, alternative versions, live versions, and remixes of the band’s music pre-Leaving Eden, many of which include the work of former bandmate, Duncan Patterson. Even their excellent cover of DEAD CAN DANCE‘s “Black Sun” made it and is the compilation’s opening track. Alternative Matter traverses the sonic palette of the band, which includes acoustic guitar/bass, female vocals, male vocals, synthesizers/programming, and violins. The songs are just as sublime, melancholic, and atmospheric as they always were.

Though ANTIMATTER fans have heard most of these songs in their original or live forms, they somehow stay fresh and vibrant in their alternate forms here. When it comes down to it, that is really a compliment to the quality of the songwriting. There are no stand out tracks as they are all fantastic. Fans will each have their favorites. With 22 tracks on the digipack double CD version, there is more than enough content to enjoy for quite some time. The premium artbook version has more than 100 pages, three CDs and one DVD. Wow.

Due to Alternative Matter‘s career spanning content, it is a great representation of ANTIMATTER‘s earlier years. Thus, a fine compilation for old and new fans of the band that will leave a lasting impression. It is also celebration of one of the underground’s best and criminally underrated bands. (Prophecy Productions)

ANATHEMA’s We’re Here Because We’re Here to Finally Receive North American Release

Legendary doom/prog band ANATHEMA are set to release the highly anticipated We’re Here Because We’re Here on June 7th on The End Records. The album’s release coincides with the band’s first ever North American tour. Dates in support of BLACKFIELD kick off on May 18th in Washington, DC.

We’re Here Because We’re Here perfectly blends alternative, rock, and prog, and marks the 8th studio album from a band with such a natural sense of melody, seething power and lyrics that they enlighten and inspire.

A special, limited edition deluxe edition will include three bonus tracks, 7 inch with two unreleased tracks, and a DVD 5.1 surround version of the album, along with the stereo version, both mixed by Steven Wilson of PORCUPINE TREE.

Tour dates can be found here.

ANTIMATTER – Leaving Eden

Time marches on as Mick Moss (vocals/guitar) powers ANTIMATTER‘s first album without its other founding member in Duncan Patterson. And Moss admirably and impressively creates the band’s best album to date. Leaving Eden is a collection of sweeping tides of emotional atmospheres. The soulful yet melancholic feel is undeniably potent and leaves quite an impression. Much of the songs take on a more rock-ish feel this time around with a healthy dosage of electric guitars, and less minimalist elements of the past. However, ANTIMATTER‘s trademark acoustic guitars are ever present. Moss has also employed a full band, which most notably includes ANATHEMA‘s Danny Cavanagh on guitars, piano, and vocals. Cavanagh‘s contributions play an integral part on the album’s success as his piano and lead guitar work help to take the songs to new levels. Songs such as “Redemption,” “Another Face in the Window,” and “Freakshow” are some of the heaviest songs that the band have ever written. ANTIMATTER aim to achieve PINK FLOYD-level heights of emotion and atmosphere and they certainly come as close as one can get. There are also plenty of acoustic guitar-based songs that are perfectly complemented by violins, bass, and drums. At the end of the day, Mick Moss is the star of Leaving Eden as his warm, soulful vocals are as good as it gets. Without a doubt, Leaving Eden is ANTIMATTER‘s most accomplished and profound work to date. Definitely a candidate for one of the year’s top releases. (Prophecy Productions)

ION – Madre, Protegenos

The diversity of metal artists often carries out far beyond the boundaries of metal itself. Influences become explorations, and one Duncan Patterson is a prime example of that. The former ANATHEMA member, who’s post-ANATHEMA musical output surfaced via the eclectic ANTIMATTER, has found himself exploring his own most personal creation in ION. ION‘s debut Madre, Protegenos retains the dark perspective of ANATHEMA and the sparseness of ANTIMATTER, never encapsulating either the heaviness of ANATHEMA or the electronics of ANTIMATTER. Madre, Protegenos is an ethereal collection of new age, world music. Tracks take a minimalistic approach, primarily driven by acoustic guitars, light percussion, and elegant “folksy” female vocals. Wind instruments occasionally dress the musical “white space” with just the necessary amount. Madre, Protegenos is a soundtrack-worthy exploration of eclectic music that is true to its intended form. There is no better example of metal’s diversity than Duncan Patterson‘s ION. (Equilibrium Music)